What's The Fuss Over The Bendy Bus?

By Lindsey Last edited 115 months ago
What's The Fuss Over The Bendy Bus?

Fans of the bendy bus, be of good cheer. The voice of London's transport users, TravelWatch, has concluded there is no case for scrapping bendy buses on some of our busiest routes after its public meeting last week.

The 38, 507 and 521 bendy buses are in jeopardy following Boris and TFL chums' consultation over their articulated future, seeking to fulfill the reckless election promise of binning the bendies. But TravelWatch took a fine tooth comb to the proposals, putting specific questions to TFL about the plans. Lo and behold, it seems there really aren't any significant benefits to changing the bus routes, but on the downside, operational costs would be much higher and, obviously, for the "non-articulated vehicles boarding and alighting will take a little longer at the busiest stops". Meh.

In the absence of any financial, safety or efficiency reasons for straightening out these routes, TravelWatch are campaigning for TFL to ask regular users of the routes in question what they think, since they're the ones crowding on each rush hour, getting caught by the revenue protection officers and doing the 'round the corner shuffle' when hanging on in the concertina sections.

Which opens up the possibility of a rare and interesting opportunity for us passengers to have a good and proper vent about our daily journeys. Feel free to practice purging your personal, emotional and social bus baggage in the comments below, in lieu of an official TFL repository.

Image by KizzieFK.

Last Updated 06 October 2008


Hooray for commonsense. Yes, yes, sure we all pine for the aesthetic, iconic look of the Routemaster but at what cost?

London's transport system cannot afford to lose a fleet of very expensive buses, but if they could, why not replace existing double deckers with Routemasters?

Bendy buses may not be beautiful but they do the job. A bit like the Londonist website then...


Someone should point out to Boris that if he thinks he has enough money to spare to swop out the existing bendies (I think it's something like £60m per annum in additional operating costs when you consider all of the routes), it might be wiser to use that nice pot of cash to fund the Cross-River Tram.


Keeping them on sensible routes (and repurposing those that are not on nice straight roads to places where they are more suited)is surely the best thing to do.

The Mayor doesn't consider the users of the buses, or the people who pay the fairs. Thousands of Londoners will be inconvenienved for the asthetic benifit of people who don't travel on the bus.


I like bendy buses.